Sabtu, 06 Februari 2016

GOVT ASKED TO LOWER GAS PRICES

by Andi Abdussalam
           Jakarta, Feb 6 (Antara) -  In line with the downward trend in the world oil prices, the industrial sector has called on the government to reduce the price of gas at home to ensure that their products remain competitive.
        At least two associations representing the industry made the appeal, namely the Indonesian Chemical Industries Federation (FIKI) and the Indonesian Olefin and Plastic Association (INAPLAS).
        "The government needs to adjust the gas prices in step with the world price trend. The price of gas is now going down in the world," Ridwan Adipoetra, secretary general of the FIKI, said here on Wednesday (Feb 3).
         He said the world crude price has now dropped 75 percent to US$30 per barrel. Accordingly, the government lowered the prices of fuels through its third economic policy package. Unfortunately, the price of gas has not yet been lowered.
         If this state of affairs was allowed to continue, it will make chemical industries at home difficult to compete.  The gas price has been adjusted only for the fertilizer industry where the government has lowered it from US$10 per 1 million British  thermal units (mmbtu)  to US$7 per 1 mmbtu.  

IDEA TO STOP PREMIUM SALE IN JAKARTA NEEDS DISCUSSIONS

By Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, Feb 6 (Antara) - The idea of Jakarta Governor Basuku Tjahaja Purnama (Ahok) to stop the sale of Premium gasoline in Jakarta has triggered public responses as it was seen as lacking grounds and is ineffective.
        The Jakarta governor has raised the idea to stop the sale of Premium in Jakarta and encourage the people to use public transportation. Therefore, subsidy for premium should better be used for developing public transportation, according to Ahok.
         "We are as the Jakarta residents should no longer consume Premium. The subsidy should be better be used for developing public transportation so that people would no longer use their private vehicles but change it to public transportation," he was quoted as saying by detikfinance, in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta on Tuesday.
         According to the Indonesian Consumers Institute (YLKI),  Ahok's idea to stop the sale of Premium gasoline in Jakarta in order to encourage use of public transportation will not be effective.  "Before taking such a step, the public transport facilities need to be improved. Public transportation network should be expanded to make all corners of the city accessible. Just stopping the sale of a premium fuel will not be effective," YLKI Chairman Tulus Abadi said on Friday.

Kamis, 04 Februari 2016

GOVT URGED TO TAKE STEPS TO PREVENT MASSIVE WORKERS' LAYOFFS

 by Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, Feb 4 (Antara) - Global economic gloom and the pronged drop in world commodity prices have affected businesses in Indonesia, with scores of large companies being forced to shut down their factories.
         A score of major companies, such as PT Toshiba, PT Panasonic, PT Chevron Pacific Indonesia, and PT Ford Motor Indonesia are planning to close their factories in Indonesia, which will result in massive layoffs of workers.
         This will lead to thousands of Indonesian workers being laid off and becoming unemployed.
         The Indonesian Workers' Union Federation recorded that the number of workers affected by the layoffs has reached 1,700 at PT Panasonic, 970 at PT Toshiba, 1,000 at Panasonic Lighting Cikarang Bekasi, 1,200 at PT Samoin, and 500 at PT Starlink.
         "These layoffs will threaten the livelihoods of the victims' families, particularly nondescript workers. I hope the government will think of the impact of the layoffs and take anticipatory steps," legislator Okky Asokawati, a member of Commission IX on manpower of the House of Representatives (DPR) said on Thursday.

Rabu, 03 Februari 2016

EMPLOYERS OBJECT TO BILL ON SAVINGS FOR PUBLIC HOUSING

 by Andi Abdussalam
         Jakarta, Feb 3 (Antara) - In efforts to resolve the issue of housing backlog, the government and the House are deliberating a public housing savings bill that will serve as a legal basis for the people to find access to savings to own houses.
        However, businesses grouped in the Indonesian Chamber Commerce and Industry (Kadin) and in the Indonesian Employers Association (Apindo) have objected to the content of the Bill on Savings for Public Housing (Tapera bill), claiming that if the draft bill is passed into law, it will put further burden on employers.
        Therefore, the Kadin has said it is opposed to the content of the draft bill because it would burden the industry and raise the cost of employment.
        "Kadin appreciates the purpose of the Tapera bill which aims to give a chance to low-income people to own houses but we have also objected to the content of the bill because it puts the burden of funding the savings scheme on the shoulders of the employers," Chairman of Kadin Indonesia, Rosan P Roeslani, said in press statement in Jakarta on Tuesday.

Selasa, 02 Februari 2016

INDONESIA'S BANYUWANGI WINS WORLD TOURISM AWARD

 By Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, Feb 2 (Antara) - Dubbed as "The Sunrise of Java," Banyuwangi, an East Java Province's district, suddenly rose to fame on the world tourism stage when it was declared the first winner of a world tourism award in Europe.
         Banyuwangi's success at the prestigious tourism forum came as Indonesia won three awards of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) at a ceremony held in Madrid, Spain, recently.
         According to a district government spokesman, the Banyuwangi administration with its "Re-inventing the Government in Tourism" project, emerged as the first winner for Innovation in Public Policy and Governance category of the 12th UNWTO Awards for Excellence and Innovation in Tourism.
         It defeated candidates such as Colombia, Kenya and Puerto Rico.
         Besides Banyungawi, other three categories were won by the Itaipu Technological Park (Brazil) in the UNWTO Award Innovation in Research and Technology category, the Treetop Walking Path (Lithuania) for the Innovation in Enterprises category, and the Sisterhood of Survivors Program (Nepal) for the Innovation in Non Governmental Organization category.
         Garuda Indonesia's Bali Beach Clean-Up campaign was the First Runner-up for the UNWTO Award for Innovation in Enterprises category.
         Indonesia's NGO, Karang Lestari Foundation, with its  "Coral Reef Reborn" project was also the First Runner-Up for the UNWTO Award for Innovation in Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) category.

Senin, 01 Februari 2016

INDONESIA REVITALIZING TRADITIONAL MARKETS

 By Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, Feb 1 (Antara) - For most Indonesians, traditional markets are crucial to their day-to-day lives and economic activities, yet with the rapid growth of modern markets that have made shopping convenient, traditional markets are being pushed to the margins.
         But since the country's middle and lower class consumers still need these traditional markets, they have actually drawn the attention of the government in the past one decade.
         It was only in recent years that the government paid serious attention to revitalizing these markets, transforming them into a clean and convenient place for shopping.
         The current government under the administration of President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has planned to revitalize some 5,000 traditional markets across the country until 2019.
         "The program to revitalize 5,000 traditional markets has been running well and will continue to till 2019. In 2015, the government revitalized 1,010 traditional markets. Actually, the number of traditional markets that were up for revitalization in 2015 had reached 1,017 but seven of them cancelled their proposals, Trade Minister Thomas Lembong said last week (Jan 26).

RI ENCOURAGES FISH STOCKING TO MAINTAIN FISHERY RESOURCES

By Andi Abdussalam
          Jakarta, Feb 1 (Antara) - The Indonesian government continues to encourage eco-friendly cultured fish development and has begun fish restocking as part of its efforts to maintain the sustainability of its environment and fishery resources.
        Director General of Cultured Fish of the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Slamet Soebjakto affirmed that eco-friendly and sustainable development of fisheries is being carried out in line with the directives of Marine Affairs and Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti.
        "Based on the directives of Minister Susi, the development of cultured fish must not harm the environment, but it should support the sustainability of nature and fishery resources. Thus, fish restocking is also being carried out to achieve the two objectives," Soebjakto noted in a written statement recently. 
    According to the director general, the cultured fish sector should continue to be boosted in an effort to maintain its sustainability through restocking activities aimed at preserving and enriching the natural fishery resources.